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GAME “will be a phoenix rising from the flames,” says EA

Thursday, 22nd March 2012 11:34 GMT By Johnny Cullen

Faltering specialist retailer GAME will rise “from the flames” like a phoenix, EA UK boss Keith Ramsdale has said.

Speaking at the Westminster Media Forum this morning (via GI), Ramsdale was keen to stress GAME needed to go down a different path than it is now, pointing towards encouraging sales of Mass Effect 3 and FIFA Street through other retailers.

“I do hope and believe there will be a phoenix rising from the flames. GAME is full of good people, it’s a good store, I just think they need a different approach and I’ll think they’ll have one,” he said.

“GAME is one retailer out of many, albeit historically a very good retailer. Without talking numbers I can tell you that when we shipped Mass Effect and FIFA Street we were very pleased with our numbers in the UK and GAME were unable to buy them.”

He added that the High Street should look towards inspiration from elsewhere.

“Would I rather there is a GAME? Absolutely I would. I believe that a specialist retailer does a lot for this industry. One of the opportunities for a specialist is to be much more multiform at than they currently are, to the point of Apple or Android.

“If you look at the current retail base, HMV seem to be stepping up and seem to be more solid. Amazon have done a good job of picking up content, so yes, there’s more than just GAME. The opportunity for video game retailers is think broader than just the shiny discs.”

A report this morning suggested that the retailer, now in administration, has six buyers queueing up for it.

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6 Comments

  1. viralshag

    HMV were always a lot more expensive in my experience of visiting them for games. Deals were never that great either.

    So is this guy basically saying even though GAME have been a good retailer in the past, they needed to be taught a lesson and that’s why there was no ME or FIFA street?

    From what I heard, there was a disagreement related to credit terms between the companies and EA would not agree to the new terms asked for by GAME, and that’s why they received no stock.

    I mean it’s pretty fair in business to do that but it’s not like GAME wouldn’t have sold both of those games in abundance.

    #1 3 years ago
  2. DrDamn

    @1
    It wouldn’t matter if they did sell the games in abundance if they then went into administration soon after. EA wouldn’t have been paid yet and there would be a whole raft of other creditors in the queue before them.

    #2 3 years ago
  3. viralshag

    @2, From the sounds of it sales from ME3, FIFA Street and the other Capcom/Nintendo games would most likely have helped them avoid administration in the first place though.

    ME3 alone would have probably been enough to keep them afloat. If they thought a firesale of current stock might have helped, I’m sure the sales of two of the biggest games of 2012 would certainly have helped too.

    I don’t want to sound like one of these conspiracy nuts, but it seems like it was a perfect time for publishers to remove a big problem in the UK retail scene.

    At the end of the day, the publishers hold all the cards as to who will sell their games at retail in the UK, I think that much is clear from this situation.

    #3 3 years ago
  4. DrDamn

    @3
    They have much more serious and deep rooted problems than a couple of very good selling games would have fixed.

    #4 3 years ago
  5. viralshag

    @4, While I’m sure they do have problems, I think you’re underestimating what the sales of a game like ME3 would mean to a specialist retail store like GAME.

    Games such as ME3, FIFA and other big brand games like that will be where a lot of their main profit comes in and losing all access to such a game will have dramatic implications.

    #5 3 years ago
  6. sg1974

    @5 GAME needed about £150m almost immediately in order to avoid breaching its banking covenants. If it could sell about 20m copies of those games in about two weeks it would have helped.

    This is one of those games (no pun intended) where coming up with some of the money doesn’t do.

    #6 3 years ago

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